Used market slipped off 2016 pace in December

A 9 percent drop in year-over-year Class 8 used truck sales in December pushed the entire market down 1 percent for the entire year compared to 2016, ACT Research announced Friday in its latest State of the Industry: U.S. Classes 3-8 Used Trucks reports.

“Dealers are reporting that used truck sales have strengthened and improved from the earlier levels seen in 2017, appearing to be headed in a good direction,” says Steve Tam, vice president at ACT Research. “Most dealers are reporting better, but not great, sales, while freight rates have improved and appear to be stable, which helps all truckers, but particularly owner operators and small fleets who often buy used trucks.”

ACT states all three markets, retail, wholesale and auction, were up year-over-year in December, as well as for the full-year. Additionally, the average price of total reported used Class 8 trucks gained 5 percent year-over-year in December, but lost 5 percent in 2017 versus 2016.

“Given the expected strength of the new truck market in 2018, it is likely pricing pressure will resume in the latter half of the year,” Tam says. “It is worth noting that this December had two fewer build days than the last month of 2016, meaning on a per-day basis production was actually higher in 2017.”

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